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No proposal to revoke ban on Chinese apps, Centre tells Lok Sabha

Source : Hindustan Times

No proposal to revoke ban on Chinese apps, Centre tells Lok Sabha
Information Technology Minister Ashwini Vaishnav delivering speech in Lok Sabha Along with Finance Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman in background (File Photo)

The electronics and information technology ministry told the Parliament on Wednesday that there was no proposal to remove the ban on blocked Chinese mobile applications.

In response to Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) MP Malook Nagar, IT minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said, “There is no proposal with the ministry to revoke the blocking orders.” India on September 3, 2020, banned 118 China-linked mobile apps, including widely popular game PUBG, two months after similar curbs on 59 apps, mostly Chinese, and a month after banning 47 more apps linked to that country. MEITY had then said that the apps were attempting to steal and surreptitiously transmit users’ data “to servers which have locations outside India”.

This ban was announced amid border tensions between India and China which has not been resolved fully despite multiple rounds of negotiations at the diplomatic and military levels. The Centre cited concerns over the apps being “prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity… defence of India, security of state and public order” amid a months’ long standoff with its northern neighbour at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Eastern Ladakh.

“We continually strive to comply with local laws and regulations and do our best to address any concerns the government may have,” a TikTok spokesperson previously said when the ban was imposed in 2020.

Apart from this, IT minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said broader consensus with states was required for better regulation of cybercrimes through new and secure browsers.

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